Sydney Water's GPT plan to keep waterways clean

Sydney Water Corporation

Wednesday, 08 February, 2023

Sydney Water's GPT plan to keep waterways clean

Sydney Water will invest close to $1 million to produce and install five Gross Pollutant Traps (GPTs) over the next 12 months. These traps will aim to protect the city’s flora and fauna by sitting in storm drainage waterways and collecting tonnes of plastic and debris every year.

In the past year, 75 traps situated across Sydney collected 1500 m3 of waste across the city’s storm water networks — the equivalent of almost 9500 bathtubs of debris.

Sydney Water operates around 450 km of stormwater channels across the city. Gross Pollutant Traps are designed to catch debris such as plastics, rubber balls, Styrofoam, shopping trolleys, chairs, footwear, rubber tyres and car bumper bars. They are strategically placed to protect sensitive ecosystems and areas with high wastage loads, including coastal freshwater wetlands and the critically endangered flora and fauna situated there.

When debris is removed from the GPTs, plastics are recycled where appropriate and organic matter is processed for reuse as a gardening product.

Three of the five GPTs will be installed at the Parkside Drive Wetland site in Kogarah Bay and the other two will be installed at the Milson Park Wetland site in Westmead.

“The real benefit of this program is the environmental benefit. We see this as a tangible way to help ensure our wildlife in our wetlands continues to flourish. We all love healthy waterways,” said Lorne Gurney, Sydney Water Network Programs Scientist.

According to Gurney, these traps are beneficial in keeping waterways clean.

Image caption: Sydney Water Network Programs Scientist Lorne Gurney with a Gross Pollutant Trap protecting Botany Wetlands. Image: Supplied.

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